Latest Research: Vacations Help You Be Healthier & Happier

photo of a black and white Chihuahua in a dr. outfit in a surgery room

“Vacation is not only good for the heart, it’s good for the soul” ~ Lincoln the Chihuahua

“When people go on a relaxing vacation, they tend to return happier and more relaxed. (The operative word here being relaxing, not frenzied whirlwind.) Traffic? A smile and nod instead of flipping the bird. An upset at the office? A deep breath and a focus, not on the drama, but on the task at hand.  And those mellow, good vibes spread “like a contagion” to everyone you come in contact with. “Even people you don’t know personally,  Send everyone away on vacation at the same time, and that contagion takes off through the population like a viral happiness pandemic”. That was a quote from scientist Terry Harlig of Uppsala University in Sweden.

photo of a man relaxing in a Lake Cumberland Houseboat Hot tub looking out over Lake CumberlandVacations not only make you healthier and happier…but everyone around you!  A few added benefits of vacationing include 1) Stress Reduction 2) Heart Disease Prevention  3) Improved Productivity and one of my personal favorites 4) Better Sleep!

Recently scientists studied monthly anti-depressant prescriptions in Sweden and in a recently published study, they found that the more people took vacations at the same time, the more prescriptions dropped exponentially. That was true for men and women, and for workers as well as retirees….and probably blogging Chihuahua’s too!

Photo of black and white Chihuahua in fly fishing outfit sitting by a trout stream with a fishing pole

Hatchery Creek Trout Stream

As someone who likes to travel, I personally have no trouble taking a break from my blogging and using up all my vacation days, this is sadly not true for many others. According to research by the U.S. Travel Association, more than half of American workers (55%) left vacation time unused in 2015. This adds up to 658 million unused vacation days!  These unused days cost the U.S. economy $223 billion in total economic impact and 1.6 million jobs!

Whatever your excuse to not take a vacation used to be, start with a new slate in 2017 and plan in advance how you will use your allotted vacation days.  People (and pets) that take time off are healthier AND happier!  People that take vacations with their family are able to form lasting memories and stronger family bonds.

Until Next Time…

Lincoln the Chihuahua